Cherish (2002)

cherishThis is an excellent movie, I must say. At first I was a bit hesitant to watch this, because the first five minutes drag on with slow moving dialogue and character development. This movie tries to make a clear point of the fact that she is indeed a lonely desperate character, and they use her vulnerability and desperation against the audience as we witness her injustices but can do nothing about it. Finny Taylor is top-notch at both directing and writing this great black comedy and gives us a minds eye view into this character. The character Zoe often hides herself and escapes into music throughout the movie, so much so she is well-known by a DJ at a local radio station.

The movie is often blaring hip music from the eighties and provides an upbeat and light soundtrack considering the actual mood of the movie. Robin Tunney is at her best here, often displaying two personalities and switches them well conveying both child-like innocence and vulnerability, and then courage and sexuality. Her character experiences a massive change into the story of the movie and she pulls everything off with ease and poise. She is the best aspect of the movie enabling the audience to feel for her as she goes through ordeal after ordeal and we root for her all the way. Throughout the movie she discovers many ways to work around the device often having neighborhood friends install devices for her to extend her range, and, my favorite, when she ties a string to her ankle enabling her to move at limited distances like a leash. The greatest sequences of the movie is when she makes the building she lives in her own personal area of exploration and creates many ways to go through the building.

That said, the movie often has these goofy fantasy sequences that, are funny, are completely misplaced through the movie and made me groan a little. Often times it looks like the characters are on Acid rather than fantasizing. I would have liked to see more with the romance between Daly and Zoe; I felt the writer didn’t focus enough on the relationships which could have helped the movie in many ways. I was also very unsatisfied with the ending creating a huge plot-hole and leaving me scratching my head and asking a lot of questions that weren’t answered. In either case, the writers takes suspenseful turns in the story as Zoe is forced to deal with a mysterious obsessed stalker who taunts her over the phone. She must attempt to prove her innocence and expose this mysterious man to the authorities while keeping this device on, which isn’t an easy task.

Finn Taylor shows off immense skill as both writer and director, giving both an immaculate and witty script while showing skill through the camera lens. My favorite scene is when Zoe seeks out her stalker with the help of her police friend Daly (Tim Blake Nelson), the bracelet installer who pays her weekly visits and has exactly nine hours to seek out the man and return home or both their lives are at stake. She manages to discover her stalker but is short on time and money. In an incredible and tense scene she is forced to run nonstop across town. The camera never cuts away but follows her all the way as desperation is her only strength. It’s a tense and powerful scene that shows both skill on the Taylor and Tunney’s part. This is a funny and tense thriller with an excellent performance by Robin Tunney helped with a top-notch script and directing by Finn Taylor. Too bad this didn’t get much attention, I had a lot of fun watching this.